UNTV at 60

November 3, 2009

So, why have my last few posts showcased the UN’s digital communications platforms specifically for television? The answer is that this Thursday, 5 November, UNTV will celebrate its 60th anniversary.

Over that period, UNTV has documented events that changed the history of many parts of the world, such as the end of apartheid in South Africa, the restoration of peace in Central America, the wars in the former Yugoslavia, and the birth of a new country, Timor-Leste, to mention a few.

At UN Headquarters in New York, UNTV covers live meetings in the Security Council and the General Assembly and press encounters and concerts almost every day, with its work sometimes involving over a dozen cameras at any one time.

A recent development has been to enable New Yorkers to receive UNTV through Time Warner cable on Channel 150. However, thanks to the digital communications platforms set up for the service, people around the world can watch UNTV coverage wherever they are. 

As I have mentioned previously, the channel is also interactive with a presence on YouTube, engaging a new generation of viewers, and regular series are produced to tell the UN story in programs such as 21st Century and UN in Action (see posts below). UNTV’s work over 60 years has generated more than 150 prizes from the international broadcasting industry. I wonder what the next 60 years of UNTV will bring, or if it will even exist in another 60 years…

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